About a week or so ago I posted about how we've been rethinking Halloween and what that means for our family this year so I thought I'd come back and share what we plan to do.
Fortunately, this year Halloween falls on a Wednesday so our church has decided as a missions opportunity to hold a trunk-or-treat and invite the neighborhood to come. Oh, I can hear it now:
Come on, so you change the name a little and do it in the church parking lot instead of your block, how's that really different?
Well, truthfully it doesn't have to be. We could dress up, throw candy at some kids and go home no different than if we'd done nothing at all. The actions by themselves are worthless, empty filthy rags without God.
Or we could plan a bunch of stuff and invite God to come and hope He blesses it. "Hey, God look at all we're doing here for You! What would You do without us?" type of thing. That would be worthless too and maybe worse because we're deceiving ourselves as well as others.
But here's where it's at for me and why it makes sense for our family:
Recently our pastor said something that really stuck with me - God can take something meant for evil and reclaim it for His glory. He can. And does. The story of Joseph is a good example of God doing this, Moses is another. As Christians, we don't have to hide inside while darkness gathers around us, we can allow God to use us to fulfill His mission!
Here's another thing, God gives certain commands in the Bible and those commands are not contingent on the calendar. There's no out just because it's October 31 any more than thinking we only need to tell others about God on Christmas and Easter. 1 John 5:3 says, "This is love for God: to obey His commands." and in John 15:14 "You are my friends if you do what I command.".
- We are commanded to put Him first.
- We are commanded to love our neighbor.
- We are commanded to serve. The first time I typed sever...yikes!
- We are commanded to spread the gospel.
I'm sure some will disagree but for us these commands apply here. This is something that we are to do every day, and I think that this is an opportunity to do it on a larger scale than we could otherwise.
God is the focus, we are the followers.
We can't do the work, only God can, but we can be obedient to His commands and I don't think that we would accomplish that effectively by either boycotting Halloween by hiding in our houses or embracing Halloween as willing participants. This is the way that we feel God is leading our family to spend this time, it may look different for yours. I'd love to hear your thoughts and plans in the comments!